NHPR Debate Spotlights Shaheen’s Inaction on COVID Aid and Devotion to Partisan Politics


NHPR Debate Spotlights Shaheen’s Inaction on COVID Aid and Devotion to Partisan Politics

Contact: Carmelle Druchniak at

BEDFORD, NH – Today’s New Hampshire Public Radio debate between Republican U.S. Senate nominee Bryant “Corky” Messner and opponent Senator Jeanne Shaheen spotlighted the incumbent’s lack of leadership and delaying tactics in helping Granite Staters still reeling from the COVID pandemic and its economic impact.

Shaheen’s statements that she and Democrats are holding out for a better aid package “is an illogical argument,” said Messner. “We should get money now to people who need it, then we can talk about getting other money. It doesn’t have to all come at once. But to allow people to continue to suffer, to allow small businesses to continue to suffer, to hold out for more, when you can do the packages in phases and be more targeted is the way to go.

“The idea you let people suffer in order to get negotiating leverage makes no sense.”

He also criticized the Shaheen family businesses for receiving millions in Paycheck Protection Program funds through the initial Covid aid CARES Act. “That’s cronyism and corruption,” said Messner, arguing that elected officials who crafted the aid should have exempted themselves and their families from receiving aid.

Also during the hour-long debate:

  • Messner criticized Shaheen’s opposition to Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett solely based on Democrats’ political bias and ignoring her sterling credentials and legal expertise.
  • Shaheen said she is in favor of Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden’s planned tax hikes, which according to a recent analysis would mean over 95 percent of households can expect a tax increase if the Biden-Harris plan becomes law.
  • Messner pointed to China and its Community Party government, and Russia as the foremost threats to America’s national security.
  • He supports steps to address climate change, including incentivizing the auto and energy industries to work toward solutions to protect the environment.
  • He supports the FBI’s efforts to crack down on domestic terrorist efforts, including white supremacist groups, but expanded his call for similar efforts against groups right and left who espouse bigotry and hate.

Messner said following the debate, “Senator Shahen has once again proven what we all have already known: her 30 years of elected politics have produced little results, yet many excuses. What she confirmed today was that she’s for raising taxes on thousands of Granite Staters, and she’s going to continue to put partisan politics ahead of the needs of our citizens on things like Covid relief.

“Senator Shaheen goes around the state with signs that say ‘Shaheen Country.’ No, Senator. This is our country, and in 19 days, we will take it back.”

About Bryant “Corky” Messner

Raised in a blue-collar family in Altoona, PA, Bryant “Corky” Messner attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, where he played football and prepared for military service. Upon earning the Army Ranger tab and graduating in 1979, he served in West Germany, witnessing firsthand the specter of the Iron Curtain during the Cold War. Following his military service, he attended University of Denver’s Sturm College of Law and went on to found the law firm Messner Reeves LLP, which today includes more than 100 lawyers, 200 employees and offices in nine cities.

Messner is a strong conservative, and remains passionate about giving back to the country that has offered him the opportunity to live the American Dream. His continued public service includes involvement with various non-profit organizations, including the Wentworth Watershed Association, the Army West Point Athletic Association, the Rise School Denver, and the Messner Foundation, which works to cultivate the next generation of business and community leaders.

A father of three, Messner’s two sons are West Point Cadets and his daughter is preparing to attend medical school. He resides in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire.

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